Muse: Well? Let's get to work!

Muse: Well? Let’s get to work!

By scheduling dreams and goals, I finished homework ahead of time and am ready for week 3 in my new college experience. That sense of being on top of my work feels good. But now comes the crunch. A new contract arrived last night! I’m writing Fanned Embers in the Second Chance Brides Collection for Barbour Publishing. My story is a novella about the 1910 Big Blow Up on the border of Montana and Idaho. Congratulations to my sister-authors in this collection 🙂 You’ll hear lots more as this collection comes to life in August of 2017!

“It’s about scheduling.”

I knew it was coming when I signed up for college classes and I’m excited about that opportunity. It’s not due until Jan. 10, 2017 and the plot plus a good section is already written. So with the goal of homework, my daughter’s wedding next month, judging books for Writers Digest, writing a novella project with a small indie group due end of next month, and a few other side projects… I’m working to ensure my schedule is well thought out each day. In fact, I know of some other contract work heading my way. So why the addition of college when the career is going well? It fits into my future dreams. It fits the desire I’ve had for years. It fits me. 

When people ask, “How do you fit it all in?”

My answer is, “I schedule it.” Lots of people do multiple job tasks and duties in their workday. But with a regular office job, someone else decides what those tasks are and when they’re due. Meetings, trainings, projects… duties vary. Lots of people work full time and go to school part time. Then they have hobbies, side projects, volunteerism, and house/yard improvements… It’s just life. When you think about how to fit your dreams and goals, the training or tasks to achieve them, into your day it isn’t about looking at the volume. It’s about creating a calendar and work flow you can live with. For me, it’s very busy. Yes. Very busy. But I love the life I have, the opportunities and the sense of interaction, provision, and connectedness of what I do. The difference between my job now and previous jobs I’ve had working for someone else is that I’m choosing what and when and how with more freedom than if I needed to meet job duty requirements for another company. But being my own boss still has regular job duties that have to be performed as in any other job.

My son recently asked, “Mom, do you ever get tired of writing?”

“Nope. I get tired, sure. But I love writing. I love my life.” And I’ll add here that since I couldn’t work toward my personal dreams and goals while I raised my children, there’s a burn in me that I have so much more to do to catch up to those dreams and goals. Dreams I didn’t dare speak out loud, elusive for so long I didn’t dare bring them to mind. One day those dreams emerged. My fingers took flight across a keyboard. The more I wrote, the more I needed to supplement my knowledge and talent. The more I learned, the more I soared in freedom to write and speak and teach.

Yes, I’m driven. But it’s not so much to succeed as it is to blossom into the me that God made me to be. To let those little DNA seeds God planted turn their faces into the sun while they grow tall and strong and vibrant. And sometimes those seed bloom into a moonflower, intoxicating my senses with the fragrance of story, characters, and settings I can’t leave abruptly. The stars twinkling through my office window and the moon adding romance to my journey, I write through the night until the story is spent… 

Are you driven?

Are you intentional about reaching your dreams and goals?

How are you scheduling the training and tasks of your dreams and goals into your daily life?


So the other day I made a great smoothie. High protein, lots of kale and spinach, strawberries…it really tasted great (contrary to opinions of kale haters, it sometimes works).

But I made too much. Wanting to freeze this amazing miracle (yes, kale haters, I did), I searched for an ice cube tray, having heard of this great smoothie hack idea to make leftover smoothies fast.

Creative ice cube tray?

No, no tray to be found. (Okay, none clean.) I’m on deadline, afterall. But I did happen to have a flexi gingerbread man muffin tray. So…

I know, you thought that was the humor, right? Uh, no. But it’s cute, right? And your kids will love this idea…

I toss these poor fellows in the blender expecting their buttons to burst and whirrrr. Nothing happens. (Can you see said author getting frustrated while trying to get a fast lunch?) #SmoothieFail

What? That hack was supposed to stop the ice jam. Then I look closer. No blades. Sigh. Add blades and… Hmm… Having trouble getting the smoothie ice to turn into a, um, smoothie.

Dawns on me to add liquid. And more water…a third time’s the charm. Voila! I have lunch. Don’t you hate it when gingerbread men are smarter than authors? But I did like the way it worked out 🙂 

Ever had a day like that?? Sigh. #OnDeadline #NeedFastLunch

Okay, back to work on Seven Medals and a Bride for Barbour Publishing’s Blue Ribbon Bride Collection coming out in Nov. 2016!


This true treasure, an antique Civil War era saddlepack Bible, published in New York City in 1864 belonged to my grandpa and to his grandpa. To me it signifies generations of faith. I love knowing the yellowed fingerprints on the pages belonged to my ancestors. They tell me where those that went before me spent their time in study and may hold clues to their joys and struggles too.


Birchard Nelson, preached from his grandfather’s Bible


Civil War era 1864 saddlepack Bible


This tiny Bible has a leather wrap for saddlepacking


Yellowed pages reveal the fingerprints if its readers


Josephus Hartshorn’s Bible

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